Tuesday, January 24, 2006

US Won’t Communicate with Palestinian Government that Includes Hamas

The US has claimed that negotiating with any Palestinian coalition that includes Hamas would be contrary to their policy of not negotiating with terrorists, and they refuse to do it.

I understand that the US is trying to show support for Israel, and to try to push for a government in Palestine that will be a good partner for peace. But if Hamas wins this election it’s predominantly because Palestinians feel that Hamas can get them a settlement that truly benefits the Palestinian people. A Hamas win means most Palestinians feel the PA is too weak to negotiate effectively, and that Hamas’ position of strength will lead to an equitable agreement.

The Palestinian people, for the most part, want peace. This is why Hamas had to change many of its positions to be competitive in this election, the biggest change being the removal of a call for the destruction of Israel from the Hamas platform. They have claimed time and again that they have changed to a political group, and that they are the only group who really has a chance to negotiate effectively for the Palestinian people.

Sure, I have trouble believing them, after all the terror over the years. But if the Palestinian people choose to elect Hamas, it is not for the US to say whether they are worth negotiating with or not. Every time the US tries to influence the politics of a Middle Eastern nation, it backfires and serves to further destabilize the region. Instead, the US will have to talk to whoever is elected as the governing body of the Palestinian people, and if it’s Hamas they will have to at least give them a chance to be a partner for peace.

Posted by Scottage at 2:34 AM / | |